Age 4


Age 4 has hit me a little hard. Not in the “this age is so hard to parent” sense, because let’s face it every age has its hard-to-parent parts. Age 4 has really made me realize how fast they are growing up and how quickly my time with them is going by. Yes some days (okay maybe a lot of days) feel like they are never going to end, but man do the weeks and months fly by. I truly cannot believe I have two 4 year olds. They are now considered preschoolers and no longer toddlers. I am glad I have another whole school year before they reach kindergarden. I truly hope to treasure my moments with them before we reach school age.

I love watching them grow and learn and don’t want them to be toddlers forever but wow this raising kids time really is just a blip on my own timeline.

A little Honesty

There seems to be a rash of honesty spreading through mommy blogland and I thought I would jump on the bandwagon. When we blog or post facebook updates we are usually just presenting the neat and pretty parts of our lives. Unfortunately this can lead to people thinking we live the perfect life. They think we are like Caillou’s mommy and never lose our temper, always remain calm, and our house is neat and tidy. So I thought I would share of few of my imperfections. This is not a complete list, I screw up all the time and don’t remember every thing I do wrong.

My house is usually a mess. It’s never 100% clean. A random visitor is my worst nightmare.

There are almost always dishes in the sink, it is rare that all the dishes are clean and put away. Yep I like to cook, but not clean up my mess.

Our table can sometimes go the whole day without getting wiped down. Do you know how messy young children are when they eat?

My floor is never so clean you could eat off it, but my boys regularly do eat off it. No I don’t feed them on the floor, but if they or I drop something, it still gets eaten.

I snap, I don’t always use the kindest of words with my kids. I do yell, I hate it and would love to stop and work on using more grace each and every day.

I am slow in the mornings. I would say I hardly ever get dressed before 10 and some days not at all.

My kids watch more tv then I ever thought I would allow.

I’m addicted to facebook.

I hardly ever make my bed. (I’m actually working on this one, Matt really likes the bed made, and it is a small way I can make him happy.)

My kids play outside in their socks and I don’t care. As long as they are happy, I’m happy. If a pair of socks gets stained, so what? The insides of their shoes don’t care.

My kids are loud at the grocery store. Happy loud, so I don’t shush them. I keep it at the level I can tolerate. Reminding them every so often when I know the whole store can hear their shrieks of delight that they do indeed have inside voices.

Apparently one time when I made sweet potatoes for baby food a blob ended up on our kitchen wall. The thing is it matched the paint perfectly, so by the time I noticed it was hard and stuck on, then it took time to remember to tell Matt. He looked at it and said if he scraped it off we would have to touch up the paint. Yep it is still on the wall, dare you to find it. 😉

Our home office floors are currently cement and have been since Septemberish. Really crappy looking cement. Home improvement gone wrong and too lazy to fix.

Okay enough sharing for now, also there are probably typos in this post, but I am not the best proofreader.

Beware of Sleeping while Black

Matt and I were watching tv the other night and the show “What would you do?” came on, it deals with topics from annoying cellphone users, public abuse to racism.  I always end up being shocked and saddened by the ones on racism. This particular story really was eye opening to what we are facing as Noah and Ezra age, being a young, black male has its risks.

Here is the story. I am embedding just Part 2 because that is where the racism part starts, but here is a link to Part 1 if you are interested.

Kids & excersize

I’m borrowing Stephanie’s “Mom’s Soap box” category for this one. Kids these days are chubby. The stats are growing and so are their waistlines. 1 out of 5 kids is considered obese. INSANE! I bring this up, because there is a great post over at Car Free Days about how kids are not the problem when it comes to riding a bike or walking for travel. Parents are. Parents give all sorts of reasons why their kids don’t ride or walk to school: traffic, fear of abduction, weather, crime.

Continue reading “Kids & excersize”

Never Be

Never be too busy to stop and take a moment with your child. There will always be dishes to wash and counters to wipe down, but these moments will soon just be memories and he will be grown.

Full Life in the Emptiest of Places

I’ve started reading Everyday Justice: The Global Impact of our Daily Lives. In the introduction she tackles the concept of justice as meant in the Bible vs. our common conception of justice. It is more about freeing the oppressed than punishing the wrong. “Justice: the practical result of loving God and loving others.” She referenced a passage from Isaiah that I just wanted to share.

Isaiah 58: 9-12 (The Message)

If you get rid of unfair practices, quit blaming victims, quit gossiping about other people’s sins, If you are generous with the hungry and start giving yourselves to the down-and-out, Your lives will begin to glow in the darkness, your shadowed lives will be bathed in sunlight. I will always show you where to go. I’ll give you a full life in the emptiest of places–firm muscles, strong bones. You’ll be like a well-watered garden, a gurgling spring that never runs dry. You’ll use the old rubble of past lives to build anew, rebuild the foundations from out of your past. You’ll be known as those who can fix anything, restore old ruins, rebuild and renovate, make the community livable again.

You don’t look worn out!

Apparently it is shocking to strangers that I don’t look absolutely exhausted.  Yes caring for toddler twins can be tiring work and I am worn out each and every day and I sleep good at night, but I am not some bedraggled mom who can hardly make it through the day.  While there are days I do look exhausted, and I hardly make it until Matt comes home, I am glad to say those days are few.  This got me thinking that maybe I should share what I am doing and why it works for me and my guys.

This is my view on parenting infants/toddlers and in no way do I think your particular style of parenting is wrong (well unless you are abusive or neglectful).  This is what works for us and I believe all parents should do what works best for their family.  I don’t have it all figured out, just what works for us right now.

1.  First win the luck of the draw and marry a great man like my husband.  He gets up with the boys for any midnight feedings.  (yes they are still happening, hoping they end by 18 months)  I do occasionally have to get up at night when someone is sick or inconsolable, sometimes mommy love is best, but for the most part I get to stay in bed at night.  My husband offered to do this, because he is awesome and he understands the fact that he can get by on less sleep than I can, it’s just the way our bodies work.

2.  I take care of myself.  I exercise and I attempt to eat right.  I jog 3-4 times a week, do yoga 3-5 times a week, and ride the exercise bike 1-2 times a week.  I know that might seem like a lot to some but it’s not as bad as it looks, running is with the boys in the stroller from warm up to cool down it is 40 minutes and we even take a trip to the Post Office during the run, yoga I do very basic programs that last 25 minutes during nap, exercise bike I get up early 2 days a week and ride for 15 minutes.  For eating I try to eat lots of fruit and veggies, some lean proteins and whole grains.  I am not too perfect in the eating though, I have a soft spot for chocolate.

3.  I don’t schedule a lot of activities for the boys.  We do one thing a week (sometimes none) and one grocery store/bank run.  Dragging two toddlers to something and then chasing them around is what really wears a momma out and makes her cranky.  I think I am a better mom if I am not cranky.  I understand there are a lot of wonderful, enriching activities for toddlers, but I believe that what they really need is quality time with their parents.  We spend our days playing, gardening, and doing chores together (by doing chores I mean things like me hanging laundry on the line while they eat dirt in the back yard).

4.  I have found a cleaning/house work schedule that works for me.  I do 1-2 loads of laundry every day, and I do 1 cleaning project a day.  I clean the bathrooms one day, dust another, etc.  The most on any day I spend cleaning is 1 hours.  My house is not perfect this way, but it is clean enough.

5.  If I am having one of those exhausting days I allow myself to do nothing during nap-time.  It is best to understand those days happen and you just need to take a little break.

Jesus’ Compassion

Whenever someone posts something on their blog or facebook that I disagree with I try to be open minded about it. I know I don’t have it all figured out and that in some things my own opinions could be misguided. I also know that everyone has a right to their own opinion, but a recent facebook status update frustrated me:

WELCOME TO THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Press 1 for English. Press 2 to disconnect until you learn to speak English. And remember only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you, JESUS CHRIST. And the AMERICAN SOLIDER. One died for your soul, the other for your freedom. If you agree… copy and paste in your status

I am sorry but if your profess to be a Christian that implies you follow Christ. In my opinion the above quote is not in any way Christlike. I think it is actually in direct contradiction to the second greatest commandment according to Jesus (Matthew 22: 36-40):

36″Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 37Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'[a] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'[b] 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

If you are truly following this command you would be showing compassion to your neighbors. The above facebook status in my opinion does not show compassion.

Please stop to think why they might not yet know English. Maybe they have fled a dangerous situation and are just now getting settled. Maybe there is no English class near them or they have no reliable transportation. Maybe they don’t have money for a class. Maybe there is not enough volunteer tutors. Maybe they are trying really hard and it just isn’t sticking, learning a foreign language isn’t easy. Do you think they are refusing to learn English to spite you?

I do understand that there are some immigrants in this country that have lived here for a long time and simply do not want to learn English (I assume they are afraid of losing their culture). The vast majority are trying to learn our language, our culture, and how to fit in. Over the summer I watched a documentary on the Lost Boys, they had to learn everything about America, even how to use electricity. Please keep in mind that most people that immigrate here come from a third world country and they have a lot to learn, not just English.


I don’t watch a lot of news anymore, just too busy chasing my two little ones around, but last week I did catch the news a few times and one thing I kept hearing drove me nuts.  Every news story I caught regarding the end of 2009 basically called the year ‘horrible’ and that people were glad to be moving on from this ‘horrible’ year.  I personally believe that 2009 was not horrible for a majority of Americans so it really bothered me that it was perceived as horrible.  I understand it was horrible for some, some that had never been homeless before, had never gone hungry before, or lost a loved one, and my heart breaks for them.  But the vast majority of Americans just had to live with a little less (maybe a lot less) and when considering all that we have in this country (more than enough), I was saddened that this was considered horrible.  The majority of Americans still had enough food on the table, clothes to wear, and shelter.

Even though we took some financial hits in 2009, I still consider it one of our best years ever.  For one thing we became parents to two wonderful boys.  Another reason is 2009 taught us some very important lessons in living within our means, being prepared for economic downtimes, and has caused us to grow quite a bit in our financial lives.  Plus we both made it through another year with our health.  We have great family and friends, and plenty of food.

So if you were someone thinking 2009 was horrible and good riddance to that awful year, I urge you to take another look at the year and think about all you have to be grateful for.